How to Courthouse elope in Alabama… It’s a lot more simple than you think! Don’t want the hassle of planning a big wedding? You want a small intimate ceremony with just you and your beloved? Or maybe no ceremony at all? No matter what your reasoning, here’s a list of simple steps to take to seal the deal as husband and wife.

“A successful marriage requires falling in love many times, always with the same person.”


The first thing you’ll need to do is to download Alabama’s marriage certificate. You can find this by googling ‘marriage license Alabama’ OR you can click on this link here. This certificate will ask for your date of marriage, name, birth name, birthdate, birthplace, race, sex, residence, social security number, marital history, and parents’ birth names.


The second step in tying the knot is to get your certificate notarized. There are a lot of different places you can go to get things notarized. If you don’t know anyone personally who is notarized, check your local bank, public libraries, or local UPS store.

blurred image of eloping couple

Just because you signed and notarized it doesn’t mean you’re official just yet!


The last thing you’ll need to do to be officially married is to submit your certificate to a probate court. This MUST be done within 30 days of signing your certificate. Any later and your certificate will act as void. A probate court is a court in which handles matters such as wills, estates, guardianships, etc. You can google the closest probate court to you to submit your certificate.

Here’s some other facts or questions you may have before thinking about your courthouse elopement-

  • There is no waiting period to get married. (You just have to file your certificate within 30 days for it to be a valid marriage.)
  • Are witnesses required to be present? Nope! You’re not required to have witnesses be present at your marriage ceremony for it to be legit.
  • You can preside over your own ceremony! in August if 2019 a law went into effect that allows self-solemnized ceremonies.
  • You are not allowed to have a fill in or a proxy when filing your marriage certificate at the courthouse.

Elopements can be whatever you plan them to be, but if you’re looking for a short and sweet courthouse elopement and still want to get pictures of the day, here’s an example of what a couple did for their courthouse elopement…

bride wearing grooms jacket
portrait of bride at the capital building

Both the bride and groom took off a weekday of work to get married “at the courthouse”. Earlier in the week they had filled out their certificate. In the morning they have coffee and brunch at their favorite go-to breakfast spot. They then stopped at the bank to get their certificate notarized and to withdrawal $89 for the courthouse filing fee. Following the bank, they head back home and have a chill time getting ready for their special day. They hired a bomb photographer (me) to capture their day, so they have a sweet first look with each other and exchange private vows. Afterwards, they head to the courthouse in the early afternoon (be aware of hours of your courthouse) to submit their certificate. After submitting their certificate, the happy couple traipses around downtown and gets all the romantic dreamy bridal portraits you can imagine. Later, they share a private dinner at the fanciest hotel downtown where they spend the first night as husband and wife. THE HAPPIEST AND SWEETEST DAY!! So wholesome, and definitely what captures them as a couple.

downtown salt lake citiy elopement couple

Your day can literally be anything you want. Whether you want a big wedding, a courthouse elopement, or you want to get married on a cliffside, I am here for it and would love to capture your special day. Let’s make magic happen!

The best part about this plan? No one can stop you!

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